Srila Prabhupada Explains His 1935 Vyasa Puja

By editor - 8.12 2023

Disappearance Day of Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Hyderabad, December 10, 1976

Prabhupada: (reading from Back To Godhead) “… simple expression of reverence and love. The disciple, Abhay Charan Dasa, was to become His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder-Acarya of International Society, Krishna Consciousness. ” So whatever I appreciated forty years ago, the same principle is going on. We have no change. What I understood my spiritual master… Practically I met him in 1922 and this poetry was written in 1936. That means fourteen years before writing this poetry, I met my guru maharaja in 1922. At that time I was quite a young man, twenty-five years old only, and I was posted in a very responsible position and as the office manager of Dr. Bose’s laboratory. And I was fond of in those days, of Gandhi’s movement. In 1922 1 joined Gandhi’s movement, and I gave up my educational career because one of the Gandhi’s program was to boycott the universities. That’s a very long story. And many students gave up their educational career and joined this Gandhi’s movement, and I was one of them.

So Dr. Bose, Kartik Chandra Bose, he’s a very important man. At that time he was managing director of Bengal Chemical Company. Now there is a street in the central Calcutta, Dr. Kartik Bose Street. So he was very important man, and he was our family physician and my father’s very intimate friend. So when I gave up my education and I was joining Gandhi’s movement, at that time Dr. Kartik Chandra Bose asked me to join him. So with the permission of my father I joined. So I was fond of, at that time, this Gandhi’s non-cooperation movement. And then, when I joined Dr. Bose’s laboratory, of course, I was dressed in khaddar. So Dr. Bose liked that dress, khaddar dress. He told me one day that “Out of your whole Gandhi’s movement, I like this khaddar only.” Dr. Bose said. And why? “No, because this will give impetus to industry. This hand spinning will gradually give impetus to India.” Actually that happened. He was himself an industrialist. Actually in India the chemical industry was given birth by Dr. Kartik Chandra Bose. He was very important man. He started this Bengal Chemical.

So 1922 1 met my guru maharaja through the exigency of my intimate friend, Mr. Narendranath Mullick. And I would not go. He told me information, “There is a nice sadhu. Let us go and see.” I did not like very much these sadhus in those days, national spirit. So I said, “I have seen many sadhus. They come at my father’s care. I was not very much pleased with their behavior. ” So he dragged me forcibly: “No, I have heard this person is very exalted. ” So I went. And his first opening version was that “You are educated young men. Why don’t you preach Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s gospel in the Western countries?” I did not know. So this was his blessing in the first meeting. I did not know but because we belonged to a Vaisnava family we were very much worshiper of Lord Caitanya and Nityananda, our family Deity.

So I was very much pleased that “Here is a personality who is going to preach Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s gospel.” I was very much pleased. So anyway, from 1922 to 1933 practically I was not initiated but I got the impression of preaching Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s cult. That I was thinking. And that was the initiation by my guru maharaja. Then officially I was initiated in 1933 because in 1923 1 left Calcutta. I started my business at Allahabad. So I was always thinking of my guru maharaja, that “I met a very nice sadhu. ” Although I was doing business, I never forgot him. Then, in 1928, these Gaudiya Matha people came to Allahabad during Vyasa-Puja


Kumbha Mela. As the Kumbha Mela is going to be held this year, a similar big Kumbha Mela was held in 1928. In those days they came to open their branch in Allahabad, and somebody recommended that “You go to…” At that time I was running on my big pharmacy and I was very well-known man in Allahabad as the proprietor of the pharmacy. So somebody recommended them that “You go to Abhay Babu. He is a very religious man. He’ll help you. ” So when they entered my shop I was very much pleased that “These men I met in 1922, and now they have come.” In this way I became reconnected.

And in 1933 1 was officially initiated and my only qualification was when I was introduced to my guru maharaja for initiation, so guru maharaja immediately said, “Yes, I shall initiate this boy. He is very nice. He hears me very patiently. He does not go away.” So that was my qualification. The high standard of philosophy which he was speaking at that time, practically I could not follow what was, he was speaking, but still, I liked to hear him. That was my hobby. Whenever… I was asking that “When guru maharaja will speak?” So he took it very seriously. And then, in 1936 — it’s a long history — during this Vyasa-puja day, this Vyasa-puja day, whatever I studied about our relationship with my guru maharaja I expressed in this poetry, and since that day my Godbrothers used to call me “poet. ”

And guru maharaja also very much appreciated this poetry. Now somehow or other you have found it. (laughs) I thought the poetry is lost but I do not know how it was found out by some of our disciples. I think it was found out in London museum or somewhere else by Gurudasa. They had a stock of Hannonist, and from the Hannonist, my guru maharaja ‘s paper, this poetry was found. Otherwise I thought it was lost. So anyway, this poetry is

“Adore, adore ye all the happy day,

Blessed than heaven, sweeter than May. ”

So I heard that the month of May is very pleasing in the Western countries, so I compared the happiness of this day with the May Day. They call May Day?

Devotees: Yes.

Prabhupada: Yes. “When he appeared at Puri, the holy place,

My lord and master, His Divine Grace. ”

So Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura appeared as the son of Bhaktivinoda Thakura, his fourth son. Bhaktivinoda Thakura, he was family man. He has several children, sons and daughters. So Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvafi Thakura, known in his previous life as Bimala Prasada Datta, son of Kedaranatha Datta. His father, Bhaktivinoda Thakura, his name was. He was magistrate and he was manager also, the managing board of Jagannatha Puri. The system is, the local magistrate becomes the official manager of the managing board of Jagannatha Puri. So at that time he was situated in Jagannatha Puri and Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvafi Thakura appeared at Puri. And the Ratha-yatra, the Ratha-yatra ceremony takes place and sometimes the big ratha stops at interval. So the house in which Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvafi Thakura appeared, in front of that house the ratha stopped.

So his mother took the advantage and… Because Bhaktivinoda Thakura was magistrate, so the son, the little baby, was brought before the ratha, and the pujarts allowed him to bring the child before the Deity, and the child was placed before the Deity and a garland was offered by Jagannatha. So that was the first sign of his becoming the acarya. In this way there are many incidences. So therefore his birth place is mentioned,

14 The Poeto of Prabhupada


. . the holy place,

My lord and master, His Divine Grace.

O my master, the evangelic angel,

Give us Thy light, light up Thy candle.

Struggle for existence, a human race,

The only hope, His Divine Grace. ”

So actually we are in a very precarious condition, the modern civilization, I mean to say, manipulated by the Western people. It is a soul-killing civilization, this civilization. By nature the chance is given after many, many evolutionary process. Jalaja nava laksani sthavara laksa vimšati.

The evolutionary theory is there in the Padma Purana. It is not Darwin’s theory. Darwin stolen it from Padma Purana, and he presented in a distorted way of his own imagination. Otherwise the Darwin’s theory is not the original. The theory. . . It is not theory, fact. Jtvajati,yu. It is wandering within the cycle of jrvajati, different species of life. Tatha dehantara praptth. This is Vedic knowledge, this evolutionary process. It is not Darwin’s theory. So by that process, lower animals and then the chronological order is there… First of all aquatics, jalaja. Jalaja means aquatic. Then sthavara, trees, plants. Then flies, then birds, then beasts, then human being. In this way, bahu sambhavante, after many, many millions of years we get this opportunity of human life to realize God. And this civilization is denying, refusing the opportunity to the human society to understand God, such a soul-killing civilization. It is a fact. They are denying “What is God? There is no God. Everything is science,” although they cannot explain science. They cannot do anything, simply talking like nonsense.

Last night some girls came, so they are students of botany. So I asked them, can you manufacture a seed which can give birth to a big banyan tree? “No, sir, it is not possible. ” Then what kind of botany you are studying? Actually what is their science? They talk simply something which is going on in the middle portion. Where is the beginning and where is the end of knowledge, that they do not know. They are theorizing only in the middle. They do not know janmady asya yatah, where is the beginning of this science. That is… Beginning is Krsna. Krsna says, ahañi sarvasya prabhavo. He is the beginning. Brjo ‘ham sarva-bhutanam. That seed, you scientist, you cannot manufacture. What chemicals are there that if you put in the earth and pour some water and it will grow a big tree? These scientists, they cannot explain what is the chemical composition is there. But there is. So that is in the hand of Krsna. So this knowledge means to understand the original source. That is philosophy, find out the original source. That is knowledge. So the vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyo. Actually the knowledge terminates when you understand Krsna. He is the source of everything. So there is a

“Struggle for existence, a human race,

The only hope, His Divine Grace. ”

So we got this information from His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, and that knowledge is still going on. You are receiving through his servant. And in future the same knowledge will go to your students. This is called parampara system. Evam parampara praptam… It is not that you have become a student and you’ll remain student. No. One day you shall become also guru and make more students, more students, more. That is Caitanya Mahaprahu’s mission, not that perpetually… Yes, one should remain perpetually a student, but he has to act as guru. That is the mission of Caitanya Mahaprabhu. It is not that because I am acting as guru, I am no longer student. No, I am still student. Caitanya Mahaprabhu taught us Vyasa-Puja


this instruction that we shall always remain a foolish student before our guru maharaja. That is the Vedic culture. I may be very big man, but still, I should remain a foolish student to my guru. That is the qualification. Guru more murkha dekhi karila §asana. We should be always prepared to be controlled by the guru. That is very good qualification. Yasya prasadöd bhagavat prasadah. Ara na kariha mane aša. So we should become always a very obedient student to our guru. That is the qualification. That is the spiritual qualification.

So recently… I am very pleased to say that our Harike§a, I ordered him to go immediately to Poland and he thought that he was being punished. That was… No. I was thinking that “Here is a very impor… very intelligent boy. If he is given chance to preach he’ll come out very successful.” So I see the glimpses that he has got now post. He’s a very good organizer. That’s a chance. At that time he might have thought that I was separating him. No. My good will was there that he should be given chance for better opportunity. So I am very much happy that he is doing there very nice. So this should be the attitude. My guru maharaja wanted me to preach in the Western countries, although I was at that time an ordinary manager in a chemical firm. I never thought, but I took it seriously. So from that 1922, in 1965 it was fruitful. How many years?

Devotee: Forty-three.

Prabhupada: Forty-three years. So it is better late than never. Yes. So he desired me. I thought, “Now I am a family man. Let me adjust things.” I would have accepted immediately but I was not so intelligent at that time. I thought my responsibility to family is there. “Let me wait. ” But still, guru maharaja was so kind to me that when I was grhastha, I was seeing him in dreaming and I was… He asked me, “You come with me.” So I was going, and after that, I was thinking, “Oh, I will have to take sannyasa and go with him?” So it appeared to me very horrible. I was not very much inclined to take sannyasa, but guru maharaja is so kind that he ultimately forced me to take sannyasa and do this work. So it is all his kindness. So this is the memory of his kindness. So forty years ago I remember the same thing as it is in 1922, and still the same thing is going on. There is nothing new. We have nothing to do, new. Simply let us present as it is; it will be successful. There is no… You see. The spirit of my writing is the same.


“Misled we are, all going astray.

This soul-killing civilization is misleading us. We must know this, this very misleading civilization. Our real aim of life is to understand our spiritual identification and search out our relationship with God, Krsna. That is our real business. But this modern civilization is misleading us in different ways. So I wrote this, that

“Misled we are, all going astray.

Save us, Lord, ourfervent pray.

Wonder Thy ways to turn our face,

Adore Thyfeet, Your Divine Grace. ”

So this portion he very much appreciated. So we have to find out ways how to turn the current. The current is sense enjoyment. Material life means the current is sense enjoyment, and this current has to be turned — sense enjoyment of Krsna. Sense enjoyment is there, but the material civilization, the misled civilization, is that the sense gratification is taken personal. When this sense gratification will be turned towards Krsna, then our life is successful.

16 The Poetry of Prabhupada


Just like goprs. Apparently it appears that goprs, they were attracted by young boy, Krsna, and for their sense gratification they made friendship with Krsna. No. That is not the fact. The fact is that gopts used to dress themselves nicely because by seeing them, Krsna will be satisfied, not that for their sense gratification. Generally a girl dresses also to attract the attention of the boy. So the same thing is there but it is Krsna’s sense gratification, not the gopts’. The gopts did not want anything. But will be satisifed, That is the difference between lust and love. Love is there, only possible, when it is diverted towards Krsna. That is love. And beyond that, not beyond that… Below that, everything is lust. So we should always remember this. The senses are not stopped, but when the gratification of the senses is directed towards Krsna, that is bha¼i, or love. And when the sense gratification is directed towards personal self, that is lust. This is difference beween lust and love.

So Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura knew this art, how to turn our activities for the satisfaction of K.rsna. This is Kma consciousness movement. Therefore I…

“Wonder Thy ways to turn our face,

Adore Thyfeet, Your Divine Grace.

Forgotten Krsna, we fallen souls… ”

Why we are fallen? Because we have forgotten. Our relationship with Krsna is eternal. Unless it was eternal, how you Western peoples could be devotee of Krsna? Artificially you cannot be a devotee of The relationship is there eternally. Nitya siddha krsna bhakti. By the process it is now awakened. Sravanadi šuddha citte karaye udaya. It is awakened. Love between young man and young woman, it is not artificial. It is there. But by certain circumstantially, environment, the love becomes manifest, Similarly, our love for Krsna, relationship with Krsna, is eternal. Jtvera svarupa haya nitya krsna dasa. But we have to create such situation — that eternal relation should be awakened. That is the art. That is wanted. So…

“Forgotten Krsna, we fallen souls,

Pay most heavy the illusion’s toll. ”

Because we have forgotten Krsr)a we are paying heavy, heavy toll, tax, taxation. What is that taxation? The taxation is nivartante mrtyu samsara vartmani. This human life is meant for understanding but instead of understanding we are understanding the so-called material science for sense gratification. This is our position. The energy which was given by nature to understand Krsna, that is being utilized how to manufacture something for sense gratification. This is going on. This is maya, illusion. Therefore it is,

“Pay most heavy the illusion ‘s toll. ”

Toll tax. That we are paying because we have forgotten Krsna, therefore now we have manufactured the nuclear weapon, Russia, America, and you will have to pay heavily. They are already paying heavily. The armament preparation is going on. More than fifty per cent of the income of the state are now being spent for this arm… heavily. Instead of other purposes, it is being spent for military strength, every state. So that heavy toll we are paying. And when there is war there is no limit how much we are spending for this devastation. So why? Because we have forgotten Krsna. This is a fact.



So these people they have made the United Nation, unnecessarily fighting like dogs. So this will not solve the problems. The problem will be solved if they pass a resolution that the whole world, not only this world. . . Krsna says, sarva-loka mahešvaram. Krsna is the proprietor, so why not accept? Actually He is the proprietor. Who has created this planet? We have created or father created? No. Krsna has created, but we are claiming, “This portion is American, this portion is Indian, this portion is Pakistani.” Unnecessary. What is the value of this claim? We may claim it for fifty or sixty or a hundred years, and after that, one kick, “Get out.” Where is your claim? But they do not understand this philosophy. They are fighting. That’s all, that “This is mine. This is my land. This is my land.” They do not know.

Krsna said tatha dehantara praptih. You are American today. So tomorrow, even within America if you become an American cow or American animal, nobody will care for you. Nobody will care for your politics. But this art they do not know. This science they do not know. They are under illusion. They are thinking that “I shall continue to remain American, so let waste my time for American interest,” so-called interest. There cannot be any interest. Prakrteh kriyamanani gunath kamani saryašah. Everything is being done by nature, and we are simply falsely thinking, ahañkara vimudhatma kartaham iti manyate. This illusion is going on.

“Forgotten Krsna, we fallen souls,

Pay most heavy the illusion ‘s toll. ” We are paying, paying.

“Darkness around, all untrace.

The only hope, Your Divine Grace. ”

This message. Simply we are in darkness. So we shall discuss later on again. Now just. .. What is the time now? Hm?

Devotees: Quarter to nine.

Prabhupada: Yes. So we shall discuss again. So the same thing, it is chalked out by Krsna, and by parampara system we have understood this philosophy. Evam parampara praptam imam rajar§ayo viduh. So keep this parampara system. This Vyasa-puja is parampara system. Vyasapuja means to accept this parampara system. Vyasa. Guru is the representative of Vyasa-deva because he does not change anything. What Vyasa-puja… What Vyasa-deva said, your guru will also say the same thing. Not that “So many hundreds of thousands of years have passed away. Therefore I will give you a new formula. ” No. There is no new formula. The same Vyasa-puja, the same philosophy. Simply we have to accept it. Then our life will be successful. Thank you very much.

Devotes: Jaya! (end)